I have made so many checklists this week; and I am making real progress at checking things off.
Seems kind of strange to call it “progress” when dealing with a situation as this, but we are moving forward.
I moved two of Chad’s upcoming doctor’s appointments from August to last week.
They both happened to fall on Friday, which was a hassle, but also nice to have out of the way all at once.
First was oncology.
They hadn’t yet received the MRI report from Dr. T, so they were equally shocked to hear the news.
We briefly discussed Chad’s decision to forgo treatment. And then we started another discussion – about hospice.
We completed the appointment, armed with our PA’s home and cell phone numbers.
We just adore her, and I think the feeling is pretty mutual. We have been with her from the very beginning, and she was always genuinely happy to see us.
The PA & I hugged and fought back tears as she told me to be strong, have faith, and find a bright spot in every day.
I told her I knew no other way.
We had some time to kill before our next appointment, so we headed to the mall to check something off my list.
We made our way into the first jewelry store we found and looked around.
We were guided to a certain counter, and we found just what we were looking for.
We left with two rings; each one to represent the month is which our daughters were born.
Gifts for our daughters’ 16th birthdays.
We grabbed some lunch.
Didn’t talk a whole lot.
Chad was getting tired, and I hoped the next appointment would go quickly.
We met a new PA, and I think not having a history with her might have made it easier to give her the change of Chad’s status.
We all discussed our plans for the Summer and what our goals were.
And the conversation was lead back around to hospice…I sense a trend…
In the past, I didn’t really understand the role of hospice.
Until 2007, I never really knew anyone who was terminally ill or needed any kind of medical care other than an occasional blood draw.
Since dealing with hospice during my grandmother’s cancer fight, I knew a little more of what to expect. But I still had questions about hospice; specifically what it means when you call them in. Chad & I both felt a little uneasy about calling hospice at this point; he just doesn’t look, act or feel the way I would think someone needing hospice would look, act or feel. I had in my mind that he would need to be extremely frail and unable to care for himself any longer.
But that’s not true.
While we don’t feel we technically “need” hospice right now, we are going to move forward with them.
The hospice nurses will need a baseline to gauge Chad’s condition in the future. They need to get to know our family and our routine. They need to get to know us. And we need to get to know them.
They won’t be coming in our home all the time, right now. In time, it will come to that, and I am grateful to have the resources to help take care of Chad when I need it most.
And they provide resources for the girls; therapy and grief counseling. That, alone, is a huge burden lifted.
All of this is based off a conversation with the oncology social worker, and we’ve yet to actually talk to a hospice representative due to the holiday weekend. We’re not in a hurry, but we’re glad to handle this up front. We’re more at ease knowing that the difficult part of our journey will be met with a few more helping hands.
So, I guess we’re moving forward. No other direction to go, after all.
This week, we’ll be spending time with some friends from out-of-state and Chad’s former co-workers.
Next week, our adventures begin!
I booked our trip to the Great Wolf Lodge, which will be followed by a day trip to the Lazy 5 Ranch.
Our beach and mountain trips may not happen as planned, but we’re still figuring things out.
We’ll be going to Tennessee to visit Chad’s sister and her family.
I plan to be at home for most of August, as Carys will need to get back on schedule before school starts.
Our friends gathering is in the works; and will be on a Saturday in August.
More details when they’re available.